Award Date

May 2018

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Anthropology

First Committee Member

Alyssa N. Crittenden

Second Committee Member

Daniel C. Benyshek

Third Committee Member

Peter Gray

Fourth Committee Member

Carolee Dodge-Francis

Number of Pages

61

Abstract

The postnatal period immediately following birth is a time of critical importance for both mother and offspring due to the vulnerabilities associated with poorer health outcomes. Infant and maternal mortality rates are among the highest in the world in Sub-Saharan African, often due to lack of professional health care services available. Further, postpartum depression (PPD) impacts 1 in 5 women in low and middle-income countries, with those estimates likely being underestimated. Cross-cultural research on PPD is often measured using westernized screening tools, but new research recommends utilizing combined qualitative methodologies. Here, we present the first investigation of postpartum maternal mood among the Hadza foragers of Tanzania. We administered the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) to twenty-three women, ranging in age from 15- 40 years, all with infants under the age of 12 months. We

further analyzed relevant demographic characteristics, including household composition, presence of mother in camp, parity, and age at first birth and found no associations. Follow up interviews served as a validity cross-check for the EPDS, and also suggest that a high proportion of Hadza women are depressed postpartum, and that postpartum “unhappiness” has intimate ties to pain, anxiety, and sleep patterns. These data are important for increasing our understanding of the etiologies of PPD cross-culturally.

Keywords

Cross-cultural research; Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale; foragers; Hunter-Gatherers; Postpartum Depression

Disciplines

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Language

English


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